Does progressive metal have to be 'technical' to be considered prog?


Sea of Tranquility
Nov 1, 2001
I don't get it. Most people will refuse to call a certain band prog, say Opeth, because they aren't using crazy time changes or playing technical riffs and leads, or their drummer doesn't play like Mike Portnoy.

Does the music have to be 'technical' to be considered prog really? Back in the 70's when Pink Floyd was around no one questioned their technical abilities, same goes for Rush, even though Geddy Lee and Neil Peart are technically great musicians. But they won't show it in their playing. No one can argue that these bands are prog. Yet when when we talk about Opeth, someone will immediately step forward and say they're not prog because prog requires technical proficiency on the instruments and Opeth doesn't do that.

Can't prog be prog strictly evaluating the songwriting?


NP: Nevermore - Dreaming Neon Black
IMO, technicality is not a requirement, but a by-product.

As for Rush, they definitely show technicality in their playing, though not in every song (think YYZ). Apart from the "shredding," they are BY FAR the best/the masters of shifting in and out of different time sigs. It's fucking ridiculous how well they do it.

Rush dominates. As do Floyd. Viva Prog Rock!